Yes we can!

The girls make bibingka (rice cake) the traditional way.  It takes them forever to light charcoal and  as they do they make a complete mess fanning the ashes everywhere to create a fire.  I was so tempted to make them use the oven or the salamander but I wanted them to experience how our ancestors made bibingka…hehe!

I am staying up late to watch the inauguration of President Barak Obama. Pacific time means I have to stay up until 1:00 a.m.. It amazes me how the “power of one” can inspire so many. Everyone has a purpose in this world…President Obama has his and mine in my own little way is to help promote Filipino cuisine. Right now the best way I can do this is to teach Filipino cuisine to our fast food raised generation before they forget that our food is an integral part of our culture. In class I try to teach them to do everything from scratch and do things the traditional way. I hope my students will learn that our food is beyond ordinary and that there is a fascinating uniqueness in our cooking methods.  Today everyone is fearful of the looming recession. If only aspiring chefs knew the magnifying effects of using our recipes on their menus. Using local ingredients  helps lower food cost, creates more jobs in agriculture and in the countryside, boosts local culinary tourism, and lessens our dependency on imported ingredients. And when  our recipes are used in a menu abroad it increases exports for our local ingredients.  Yes we can do something in our own little way to help our economy…yes we can put our cuisine on the world map…. all it takes is a paradigm shit to love our cuisine first before others.

Making puto bungbung with the traditional steamer and bamboo molds

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Mount Pinatubo Trek

Our Mount Pinatubo trek adventure starts from Manila…we took a three hour bus ride towards Dagupan for P180. Got off at the Sta. Lucia complex in San Miguel Tarlac to book a room at the Microtel Inn ( tel 0927-7238454) in order to break the trip and have enough energy for the long climb. Other people do it as a day tour but I also wanted to enjoy Tarlac  and be well rested as we had to be in Capas Tarlac at 7:00 am the next day. The Sta. Lucia complex beside the hotel has  Pizza Hut, Chow King, Jolibee, Dencio’s, Pancake House, a Robinson’s grocery, a Starbucks restaurant full of people(!)…and more franchise restaurants than local food..sorry I won’t be able to blog about the food…

The following day we met up with our ride at Capas to take us to Spa Town in Santa Juliana.  The place is another 17 kilometers from Capas Junction.  It is okay to bring a car as the roads are nice and there is parking in SPA TOWN. The 4×4’s are stationed their to take tourists up the volcano. Our tour coordinator was Ms. Jovi Balbiro of  her number is 0928-341-0402 and land line 045-615-0880.  She charges P1500 per person for

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